I reviewed a book from one of my favorite authors today...Temple Mount by Keith Raffel. I actually read a review copy several months ago and was anxious for it to be published so I could share it with you. It is difficult to not got involved in this historical thriller. Raffel's style invites us all to be part of his protagonists' adventures. Of course Jodi Picoult's book, Leaving Time, will make her many fans happy. The story line was interesting and the info on elephants' grieving was remarkable.
Speaking of enjoyable, the travel reviewer in me ( MADDERLY REVIEW was originally book and travel reviews ) has to give some kudos to Marriott for our stay in Paris. We stayed in the Renaissance Paris Arc de Triomphe , and I must thank them for making this one of my favorite vacations ever. The location is amazing; every time we left the hotel I caught my breathe at the majestic Arc de Triomphe down the street. Even though we stayed all eight nights on marriott points, we were treated beautifully. The room was charming and spotless, and the view was typical European rooftops. I was most impressed by the people who worked there though. From the front desk to the concierge to the restaurant to the housekeeping personnel, they were warm and efficient. They remembered our names, always smiled and we felt right at home. Now we are back to saving Marriott points again.
The food on our trip was, for the most part, fine. A few great meals...the rest were good but not special. One of our favorite restaurants was a tiny place recommended by our concierge. L'Annexe, was just what you might picture a seven or eight table Paris bistro to be. The host was charming and spoke English with that perfectly sexy French accent. He understood our allergy issues and made sure we each got a perfect dinner. It was our first night there, and jet lag held us down a bit. Arthur, Judy and I had a beautifully cooked sea bass surrounded by amazingly fresh veggies. Allan had an equally well executed risotto and scallops . A great introduction to Paris.
Of course every morning found us plying ourselves with croissants and pastry at an amazing patisserie. What a life. The pastries are insane. If you have been to Paris, you have probably heard of Angelina's, a tea and pastry restaurant across from the Tuileries Garden. The garden was a park that took my breath away. We tried Angelina's for dinner one night. The food was delicious, but the pastries were beyond belief. My choice ( Millefeuille à la vanille Bourbon- layers of carmelized puff pastry, light bourbon vanilla cream, whipped cream) was voted best at the table, but every mouthful of every selection was weep worthy.
I would be remiss if I didn't mention the fashions in Paris. I am not sure why certain manufacturers show different styles in Europe then they do in America, but I couldn't resist the shoes. Judy and I bought three pairs each, and the first time I wore a pair in the states a woman stopped me to say they were fabulous. They are! They all are!
Getting back to books, I am excitedly anticipating the books coming out next year. From January to July, authors Mitzner, Coben, Mofina, Lescroart, Gross, Finder, Grippando, Rosenfelt and Silva, to name a few, have new novels coming out. I am planning lots of reading time in the next year. Right now I am finishing The Lawyers Lawyer, the latest by Sheehan. Since I have already reviewed his previous two recently, I won't be reviewing this one, but I do recommend it if you liked the last two.
In fact, I think that it is just about time to grab my book and finish it. I have a stack waiting for next week's reviews.
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